'OK Google, what size sheath?': Meet the new smart-speaker app for surgeons — 4 insights

Surgeons can ask Google Home to provide recommendations about medical device sizes mid-operation, thanks to a new app for the smart speaker, according to Verdict.

What you should know:

1. The technology, created by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, allows physicians to access procedure-related information without removing sterile scrubs.

"When you're in the middle of a procedure, you need to remain sterile, so you lose the ability to use a computer," said lead study author Kevin Seals, MD. "This smart speaker technology helps us to quickly and intelligently make decisions relevant to a patient's specific needs."

2. Researchers designed the voice-activated medical app for interventional radiology. Physicians can ask Google Home what size sheath is needed to implant a stent in a blood vessel.

3. The researchers conducted literature reviews of 475 devices, such as catheters, stents, sheaths and vascular plugs, and added size specifications for the devices to the app's database. They used Google's Dialogflow software and Python coding language to develop the technology.

4. The researchers plan to develop voice-assisted technology capable of delivering information about other treatments. They also aim to incorporate health record information.

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